FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: David Lienemann
DHSEM Public Information Officer
November 7, 2022
New Mexico Fire Grant Council announces more than $29 million in grants for local fire departments across the state
Thanks to 2021 legislation, the Council will distribute almost 50% more in grant funding next year
SANTA FE –
The $29 million represents an almost 50% increase from the $20 million distributed in FY22, largely due to Senate Bill 256 (SB 256), which Gov. Lujan Grisham signed into law last year. The bipartisan legislation reversed a 2017 law requiring that 60% of the potential funding for the Fire Protection Grant be reverted to the General Fund. Fire departments now have access to 100% of the available capital in the Fire Protection Grant. SB 256 also created a new category of grant funding, which enables fire departments to apply for $25,000 stipends to assist with recruiting and retaining the next generation of firefighters.
“The Fire Grant Council is honored to support the men and women of the New Mexico Fire Service, and we are grateful to Governor Lujan Grisham and the legislature for working to secure new funds for local fire departments,” said Fire Grant Council Chairperson Robert Larrañaga. “We are pleased that with the increased funding available from SB 256, we can continue to invest more in fire departments across the state from Abiquiu to Willard, to provide much needed support to volunteer and professional departments. We know that with the right training and equipment, our brave firefighters can help protect the citizens of New Mexico.”
Details on the awarded grants are available here. They include:
- $17.4 million for fire trucks and other fire fighting vehicles
- $4.4 million for breathing equipment, PPE, and rescue equipment
- $3.5 million to repair and improve fire station facilities
- $1.9 million for water systems, including hydrants, pipes, and other infrastructure
- $496,200 in stipends for training, recruitment, and retention programs
“From funding for training, to station renovations, to new apparatus and more, this funding benefits our communities by allowing us to build and maintain a level of service that our citizens expect,” said Fire Chief Eric Masterson, Sandoval County Fire & Rescue.
“This grant funding will allow us to replace two outdated tenders and will have an immediate positive impact to the community,” said Matt Propp, Fire Chief, Valencia County Fire Department.
“This will vastly improve the safety of our residents and surrounding communities.” said Mickey Richardson, Chief Sierra Bonita-Rincon VFD.
The state’s increased investment in local departments is paying off for first responders and community members alike. A group of six local fire departments that benefitted from the Fire Protection Grant under this administration recently received improved ISO ratings, which gauge a department’s ability to protect lives and property –higher ISO ratings may also result in lower insurance premiums for residents.
David Lienemann, Public Information Officer | David.Lienemann@DHSEM.NM.GOV | 505 479 0144